Recreational Marijuana Placed on California November Ballot – Workplace Rights

On June 28, 2016, California Secretary of State Alex Padilla confirmed that the measure titled “Control, Regulate and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act” is eligible for the November 8, 2016 general election ballot. The Secretary of State subsequently designated the measure as Proposition 64.

Proposition 64 purports to leave employers’ workplace rights undisturbed. The proposed act states that its purpose and intent, among other objectives, is to “[a]llow public and private employers to enact and enforce workplace policies pertaining to marijuana.” The proposed act also states that nothing in it shall be construed or interpreted to amend, repeal, affect, restrict or preempt the rights and obligations of public and private employers to maintain a drug and alcohol free workplace.

Further, the act would not require an employer to permit or accommodate the use, consumption, possession, transfer, display, transportation, sale, or growth of marijuana in the workplace. The proposed act also states that it would not affect an employers’ ability to have policies prohibiting the use of marijuana by employees and prospective employees, or prevent employers from complying with state or federal law.

The act also makes reference to workplace safety, without providing any solutions. Instead, the act’s authors created a placeholder for future regulation: the new section 147.6 of the labor code would provide for an advisory committee to evaluate the need for industry-specific regulations.

AS new developments come forward, we will keep you informed. If you should have any questions, please contact your HR Ideas representative at 925-556-4404.

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